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J Korean Soc Plast Reconstr Surg. 2008 Jul;35(4):373-378. Korean. Original Article.
Son DG , Choi TH , Kwon SY .
Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Keimyung University, Dongsan Medical Center, Daegu, Korea. handson@dsmc.or.kr
Department of Pathology, Keimyung University, Dongsan Medical Center, Daegu, Korea.
Abstract

PURPOSE: In full thickness burn, the depth of burn is known to increase until around 1-3 days after the burn. However, no study on how the depth increase during the first 24 hours has been conducted. Therefore, the authors investigated how the depth of burn changes within the first 24 hours after the burn by using the standardized burn model. METHODS: A total of four experiments on pigs were carried out for this study. Experiment 1 was performed to examine how temperature affects the depth of burn. The digitally controlled aluminum thermal block was set at different temperatures-80, 90 and 100 degrees in Celsius, respectively. Then the pig was exposed to the block for 15 seconds each time. The time exposed to heat was set as a variable for the Experiment 2. The temperature was maintained at 80 degrees Celsius, and the pig was contacted with the thermal block for 5, 10 and 20 seconds, respectively. The biopsy of the tissues were performed in one hour, 6 hours, 24 hours, and 7 days after the burn. After hematoxylin and eosin staining a percentage of the depth from a basement membrane of epidermis to the deepest tissue damaged by the burn against total dermal thickness was measured. RESULTS: In Experiment 1, the depth of burn increased considerably as time passed by. At all three temperatures, differences in depths measured in 6 and 24 hours, and in 1 hour and 7 days were both significant. In addition, the depth deepened as the temperature went higher. In the case of Experiment 2, the depth of burn also increased significantly as time passed by. At all three times, differences in depth measured in 6 and 24 hours, and in 1 hour and 7 days were also significant. Moreover, the depth extended with longer contact time when it was compared according to the time. CONCLUSION: Full thickness burn progressed rapidly from 6 to 24 hours after the burn and the depth of burn was almost decided within the first 24 hours after the burn. On the other hand, partial thickness burn also advanced from 6 to 24 hours after the burn but the depth deepened at slower level.

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